14/02/2021 | FAITH IN A WILD PLACE

READING: Mark 1:9-15

The Baptism and Temptation of Jesus

9 One day Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee, and John baptized him in the Jordan River. 10 As Jesus came up out of the water, he saw the heavens splitting apart and the Holy Spirit descending on him like a dove. 11 And a voice from heaven said, “You are my dearly loved Son, and you bring me great joy.”

12 The Spirit then compelled Jesus to go into the wilderness, 13 where he was tempted by Satan for forty days. He was out among the wild animals, and angels took care of him.

14 Later on, after John was arrested, Jesus went into Galilee, where he preached God’s Good News. 15 “The time promised by God has come at last!” he announced. “The Kingdom of God is near! Repent of your sins and believe the Good News!”

New Living Translation (NLT)

Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

WARM UP:

Can you think of a time that was so positive, so good, so wonderful in your life – that it “took your breath away”? A time that left your thoughts spinning – and you needed a moment to regain your inner balance and perspective? What was it about?

QUESTIONS:

  1. Read vs.9-11 prayerfully. Reflect on the significance of what happened, for Jesus, at the moment of his Baptism.
  2. Read vs.12-13. Why did the Spirit of God “compel” (other translations say “directed” and “led”) Jesus to go into the wilderness?
  3. Reflect prayerfully on the imagery used in vs 12-13. What is going on here? Why is this event so important for you and me today?
  4. Lent is the 40 day period between the temptation and testing of Jesus in the desert, and Easter Sunday. The first Sunday in Lent this year is 21 February. Lent is the time we should use to reevaluate our faith; for some people it is a time of prayer and fasting. This Lent, make use of the image of Jesus going to “a lonely and wild place” and think on how he used that experience to refocus his faith, trusting that God was with him in that experience. Have you ever found yourself in a “lonely and wild place”? How did you work through that experience? Did you learn lessons about yourself? About your faith?
  5. What might God be asking you to change about your life during?

God bless

Rev Tim.

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